The Liberal and Nationals Government is continuing to support Australian seafarers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic with a further automatic extension to their qualifications.
Earlier this year the Government announced an automatic extension for international and domestic seafarer certificates and today’s announcement extends this arrangement until 31 January 2021.
This means that if a seafarer’s certificate expires between 26 March 2020 and 31 January 2021, they will automatically receive an extension at no cost and with no application required.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Federal Government recognised many people working in the Australian commercial maritime industry were doing it tough.
“This latest measure is about backing our Australian maritime sector, from a small commercial tourism operator, to an exporting commercial fisher, right up to a seafarer aboard a massive container ship,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.
“This further extension to certificates means one less thing to worry about for Australian seafarers.
“We recognise the important contribution the commercial maritime industry makes to our country by putting food on the table and ensuring the continued movement of people and vital freight.”
Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) acting Chief Executive Officer Sachi Wimmer said this assistance balanced management of safety risks in the marine environment with the need to support seafarers and maritime business through COVID-19.
“There is further assistance available for vessel operators through exemptions, temporary crewing permits and suspension of a certificate of survey to name just a few.”